by James Bonisteel
- When did the band Pigface actually start?
- The band started in 1990 and grew directly out of the Ministry, KMFDM
tour. Bill Rieflin and myself were the two drummers during that
[tour]. I would look around the stage and I would see Ogre, Chris
Connelly, Paul Barker, Gus from KMFDM. All these people wild, wild
people in their own right, and we were all just covering Ministry
songs. But that was a wild tour--an unbelievably wild tour. We were
escorted out of Salt Lake City--I remember it well, but I just
remember thinking, "I wonder what would happen if somebody said,
'okay, you're not Ministry tonight do whatever you want.'" And that's
what we didħħ that's how Pigface was born. Bill Rieflin and myself
booked some studio time in Chicago, and the day after the last
Ministry show we to told everybody, "hey, we've started this thing.
Come come on down to the studio." Everybody on that tour came down--
Michael from Front Line Assembly, Al Jourgensen was down (he just
drunk two bottles of Bushmill's--that was his vibe), the guys from
KMFDM 's--that was his vibe), the guys from
KMFDM came in, David Yow from the Jesus Lizard, Trent Reznor flew in,
and it became this really vibey cool thing. Then we went out on the
road and tried to recreate this anything-goes-there-are-no-rules-
- So where does Pigface originally come from?
- Well everybody's from different places. I'm originally from England.
I've been in the states for twelve years. Mary Byker still lives in
England; Magely Chin--who's singing with us tonight--is originally
from San Francisco, she's living in London; Ogre's living in L.A.,
he's from Vancouver. It's a nightmare of plane tickets. somebody
said to me, "are you the instigator and the founder of Pigface?" I
said, "no I'm just the fucking travel agent"--which other in a
physical sense or like the astral plane the spiritual sense i'm not a
band, I just bring people together, and once everybody's together in a
place I just light the fuse and retire to a safe distance.
- Who has inspired you to do what you have done with your music?
- A few people, just like a lot of groups of people. One would be
Charlie Watts, not for his drumming but because I read an interview
where he said "I always listen to a band and watch any situation
isten to a band and watch any situation
because even if it's really bad you can always learn what not to do."
And sometimes that's more of an insight than trying what to do, you can
just learn what not to do and avoid somebody else's pitfalls. Also
the Beatles. I was in the studio yesterday in Seattle recording
"While my guitar gently weeps" backwards along with a porno tape
through a harmonizer and laid vocals, and then we put on Sgt Peppers
and I went, "Oh just how innovative are we? Not very."
- Who writes the music in the band?
- Whoever's around, whoever has an idea.
- I heard that Danny Carey from Tool was here with you tonight?
- Danny, yea, this is Danny's first show with us. Also Casper from
Massacre is here with us tonight.
- How long has he been with you?
- This is his second show. We haven't rehearsed, we just get up and
- Has Johnny Lydon ever played with you?
- John said he was going to do L.A. and he didn't. I can tell you,
though, other people that have been on this tour. Laura from Thrill
Kill Kult, Doug Flanegan from 77 Luscious Babes, Doug McCarthy the
singer from Nitzer Ebb, Singer from Murphy's Law, Al from Swans, Sally
from Murphy's Law, Al from Swans, Sally
from the Mekons, Pipe players and Belly dancers, and a lot of people.
We always end like listing the names of the people, there's been an
awful lot of people who aren't in any bands. A guy drove down from
North Carolina to Tampa with a shopping cart just to play the shopping
cart and you know anybody's welcome to do that!
- We were talking to Pop Will Eat Itself and they said this was one of
the first times you were in the same town together at the same time?
- I didn't even know they were on tour where are they headed next?
- Vancouver--the opposite way.
- Good, I don't mean anything bad about that but we've been leap
frogging around Killing Joke as well, that's all. I still like those
guys I just don't work with them anymore. It's kind of an affirmation
for me that this Killing Joke are on Zoo. I was in Zoo records in
L.A. before Killing Joke went on the road and I saw a thousand
Embroidered hats ready to be sent across america and I'm happy that
Invisible Records, which is my label with the limited resources we
have, are successfully promoting Pigface to the point that we were
outselling Killing Joke everywhere. That makes me feel good about the
machinery that we have to express ourselves.
ery that we have to express ourselves.
- If you were going to ever say anything to your fans and friends out in
this world what would you say to them?
- Well there are a lot of people who say stuff and it's almost like,
"fill in the blanks, okay we've got the band!" We've got the image--
it's this and that, this and that and what's the crusade fill in the
blanks and for me. I've been around a lot of people who say a lot of
stuff, and most of it's just hollow words and bullshit. I would just
say to people, "look at what we're doing." We've changed our corner
of the music industry for ourselves. It's an awful lot of hard work,
you know, twenty eight hours a day nine days a week, but when you put
that amount of energy into something, you can change your situation.
You can change the end result and you can find fulfillment, and
whether it's music or the construction industry or the art world, if
you're prepared to work really hard you can change things and there's
no magic dude in a Rolls Royce who's going to break down outside your
apartment and discover you. You have to do it, and if you do it,
sometimes it takes a really really really long time and gets you just
really discouraging along the way and that's the test, that's the
struggle, and just do it and eventually something will happen that
will fuel you but if you just sit around and fantasize and complain
and drink and do drugs and do whatever it is to distract yourself and
then, of course, it will never happen.
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